May 3: Open house at Covered Bridge State Forest, Parke County

The DNR Division of Forestry will host an open house at Covered Bridge State Forest and its equestrian facilities, located north of Annapolis, on May 3, from 3-6 p.m.

Appointments to visit at other times are also available.

“We continue to seek alternatives to open these facilities for public use and welcome business and groups interested in leasing or operating the facilities to visit the site and discuss the possibilities,” said State Forester John Seifert. “This would be a wonderful place for a horse club, scout group, church or other organization to hold a week-long event.”

Forestry officials said they hope to make facilities available for organizations to hold events there in 2012. The property can accommodate some overnight use by people and horses, but limited facilities prevent it from hosting the volume of users that other DNR horse facilities can accommodate.

“The state tries to understand each of its public offerings and design site-specific use plans to give customers unique and enjoyable Indiana experiences,” Seifert said. “One part of that understanding is having public discussions like this open house.”

The facilities at the 296-acre state forest property were at one time operated and known as “Country Haven” by the Gehlhausen family, who sold the property to The Nature Conservancy in 2008. The property was acquired by the DNR in 2009. The facilities include horse stables and a horse arena, five miles of trails and a small campground.